or maybe not so happy!
Breeding season is over and we have consolidated the sheep from 9 pens to 3 pens.
Here are the ‘not so happy’ boys. They are in this small pen to become friends again.
Reintroducing the rams needs to be done with care. A pecking order has to be reestablished and a lot of head bashing and general unpleasantness can take place. To cut down on potential injuries, we tie the boys up in a small pen for 24-48 hours and then turn them out together with very enticing food. We tie them up so they can’t hook each other with their horns. We have had good success with this method. When I checked on them this morning, they were relaxed and laying down with each other.
You may be asking, where are the rest of the rams? Well, the ram lambs are all turned out together…they aren’t big enough or serious enough at this age to be a problem. There was a little bit of pushing each other around, but they quickly got over it.
and lucky Mac is out with all of the girls. We are using him as a ‘clean-up’ ram, just in case someone wasn’t bred.
He spent the evening checking out the new ladies…
and whispering sweet nothings to them.
He is a happy boy 🙂 He will be with the girls for another couple of weeks and then he will spend the winter with the ram lambs.
The girls were very happy to be reunited. Friends were together again and mothers and daughters soon found each other. I get a kick out of watching them interact with each other, when they have been separated for a while. My friend Lisa, brought her 4 ewes that she bought from us here to be bred and they quickly found each other and have been stuck like glue ever since.
This group of girls will have to wait to be reunited because I don’t want them bred. It includes the ewe lambs and the two retired girls – Holly & Dolly.
It also includes our two new girls Puddleduck Cleora and Huntsberger Venus. They are waiting for our new ram lamb to arrive…
Byeburn Hector is coming from New Jersey and should be here next week. He will be the 7th ram we are using for breeding this year. To view all of the rams and ewes that were bred this year you can click on the 2011 Breeding Line-up page.
I am looking forward to the day when all the ewes are in one group and everyone truly is ‘one big happy family’.
Wow; SEVEN breeding groups?!? Although, considering how few ewes I have, the fact that I will have THREE breed groups (more like breeding PAIRS) is pretty ridiculous. I’m aiming for putting them together around the first of October; I’d better get busy preparing!
Yeah, 7 breeding groups sounded like a good idea! I know I will be happy when the lambs start arriving, but chores took a REALLY long time! My friend and I have joked about breeding pairs before 😉 Are you using CDRS again?
Shannon question on tying up the rams, how do they get use to each other while being tied and how do they establish pecking order. Once you let them go dont they start head bashing?
Good questions Peg…I read about tying the rams up somewhere a few years ago and have been doing it since with good success, I don’t know ‘why’ it works. My guess is that they are rubbing their smells on each other while tied up and they are so tired of being tied up that they are more focused on eating and drinking than fighting. We are also careful with our ram pairings. We try to put a mature ram with a couple younger rams or a very dominant ram with a couple rams that really don’t need to be top dog. There is usually a little scuffling, but if things get too serious we take them back and tie them up for another day. We turned the 3 boys out tonight and they are peacefully eating together tonight. It is always a tense moment when we take the halters off.
Yep, will use the CIDRs again — in a matter of days! I will be reusing them; have been told that works if you clean them off and then store them in the freezer, which I did.
I love how our Jacob families stick together. Your sheep are beautiful!